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Boxted

Military site : airfield

Boxted was built for heavy bombers and became operational from May 1943. In the few months B-26 Marauders of the 386th Bomb Group were stationed there, there were two night attacks by the Luftwaffe. On 17 August 1943, one man was killed when bombs fell amongst the Nissen huts.
The next unit to fly from Boxted was the 354th Fighter Group, a Ninth Air Force group temporarily under control of VIIIth Fighter Command. They flew escorts for long-range bombing missions, including the first P-51 Mustang mission in the ETO. In preparation for the invasion of Normandy, the 354th moved to Lashenden in Kent, and the 56th Fighter Group took their place. This unit was one of the most famous in the Eighth Air Force, on account of its high numbers of 'ace' pilots. For a large part of 1944 the base also hosted an air-sea rescue unit at its northern edge, a nearby farmhouse being used as the its administrative building.
Roger Freeman, author of 'The Mighty Eighth' series of books about the USAAF, lived nearby and frequented the base during the war. His father, a farmer, had permission to cut grass at the airfield to make hay.

Detailed history

Not yet known

English Heritage's record description

Not yet known

Service

Units

People

  • John Aagaard

    Military | Enlisted Man | 56th Fighter Group
    John Aagaard served in the 1126th Quartermaster Company, which was attached to the 56th Fighter Group in England.

  • Sidney Abell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 62FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th ERS.

  • Ralph Aberth

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 62FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Ended Tour of Duty (ETD).

  • Thomas Adcock

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Ended Tour of Duty (ETD).

  • Lyle Adrianse

    Military | Brigadier General | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 63FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. 101 combat missions. Transferred after promotion to HQ Sqn 65th Fighter Wing.

  • William Aggers

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 495th Fighter Training Group
    Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Baled out during navigation mission when visual contact with leader was lost in overcast in P47 41-6401 Returned to Duty RTD. 31-Dec-43. Transferred to 495FTG 8AF USAAF.

  • Frank Aheron

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 62FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Killed in crash at Cranfield following mechanical failure of P-47M 44-21125. Canopy covered in oil, engine misfiring before crashing 2 miles north of Cranfield, Died Non Battle DNB.

  • Richard Akard

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 353rd Fighter Group
    First lieutenant in the Air Force during World War II, assigned to 352FS, 353FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron. Flew 90 European missions and received both the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal (5 OLC), as well as...

  • Paul Albers

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 56th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 63FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Ended Tour of Duty (ETD).

  • Edgar Albert

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 353rd Fighter Group
    Assigned to 351FS, 353FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) bomber escort Romilly Sur Seine, having attacked some Fw190's, section was bounced by three Bf109's out of the sun. Lt Albert broke left whilst his element leader broke right and into the E/A....

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Aircraft

  • 41-31576 Dinah Might

    B-26 Marauder

  • 41-34958 Hazard

    B-26 Marauder
    B-26C-15-MA 41-34958 "Hazard" [RG:F] was assigned to the 386BG/552BS at Boxtred, UK. On 9-Sep-43 the aircraft was shot down by a direct hit of anit-aircraft fire while attacking the coastal defenses around Boulogne, France. 4 of the crew were killed,...

  • 41-34971 Pay Off

    B-26 Marauder
    B-26C-15-MA 41-34971 "Pay Off" was assigned to 386BG/554BS at Boxted, UK. The aircraft was attacked by an enemy fighter on 22-Aug-43 while on a mission to bomb the German airfield of Beaumont Le Roger, France. The fighter attack set the right engine on...

  • 42-102661 Big Dog

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 23/3/44; Hunter 9/4/44; Dow Fd 29/4/44; Assigned 544BS/384BG [SU-L] Grafton Underwood 1/5/44; transferred with group to Istres for mapping duties; Salvaged 9AF Germany 29/12/45. BIG DOG.

  • 42-28623

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) Strafing mission to Oil tanks in Frankfurt. A/C abandoned, pilot Capt Gordon J Blake Prisoner of War (POW). 18-Nov-44. MACR 10333.

  • 42-28688

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    P-47 Thunderbolt 42-28688 62nd FS, 56th FG, 8th AF, part of the famous Zemkes Wolfpack, this plane was lost on a sweep of Koblenz when hit by flak 18th December 1944. Pilot 2nd Lt Haggard bailed out and became POW. MACR 11308.

  • 42-74660

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 62FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 406FS, 9AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) 5-Jul-44. Ran short of fuel over north sea, abandoned by pilot Lt Arlington Canizares Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 6618.

  • 42-75161 'Gator Bait'

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 351FS, 353FG, 8AF USAAF. Personal aircraft of Lt Francis N King. Failed to Return (FTR) bomber escort Romilly Sur Seine, having attacked some Fw190's, section was bounced by three Bf109's out of the sun. A/C broke left whilst element leader...

  • 42-75444 "The Magnet" on cowl and "Lady Beth" on fuselage forward of cockpit.

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 62FS, 52FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) Rodeo to Hamburg in combat with Fw190, which he damaged, shot down when Fw190 out turned him. Lost 13-May-44 pilot Lt Harold E Hartney Jr Killed in Action (KIA) MACR 4690.

  • 42-75658 'Little Chief - Anderson Indian'

    P-47 Thunderbolt
    Assigned to 61FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) mission 21-Jan-44. pilot Lt Allen E Dimmick KIA. MACR 1849.

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Revisions

Date Contributor Update
14 December 2016 12:00:06 SavvyGA Changes to description
Sources

Addendum: Roger Freeman's wartime links with the airfield.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:02:16 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Barry Anderson, Army Air Forces Stations (Alabama, 1985) / Roger Freeman, Airfields of the Eighth Then And Now (London, 1978)

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